Experiencing persistent back pain can be very frustrating and can cripple your ability to carry out various activities. Back pain is often not a cause of concern, but you may require immediate medical attention if it becomes persistent. Your leading Spinal tumors in Edison experts at Jeff Pan, MD, offer accurate diagnosis and effective treatment options if you have a spinal tumor or any other back-related ailment.
What is a spinal tumor?
A spinal tumor refers to an unusual growth of tissue around your spinal cord or spinal column. The tumor develops due to abnormal growth and uncontrolled multiplication of cells without the awareness of body mechanisms responsible for controlling growth cells. The two main types of spinal tumors that can adversely affect you include:
- Intramedullary tumors
These tumors occur within your spinal cord due to the uncontrolled multiplication of spinal cord cells. They include gliomas, astrocytomas, and ependymomas.
- Extramedullary tumors
These types of tumors develop on the membrane around nerve roots or the spinal cord. These tumors may not necessarily develop within the spinal cord, but they may affect your spinal cord’s functioning by causing compressions that lead to excruciating pain. Some extramedullary tumors that might affect you include meningiomas and schwannomas.
Symptoms to expect when having spinal cord tumors
Spinal cord tumors affect people differently; their location also influences how they affect people. The blood vessels and nerve roots in your spine are the areas most affected by the tumors. Some of the symptoms include:
- Extreme back pain that worsens at night.
- Numbness in your legs and arms
- Back pain that spreads to other areas.
- Reduced sensitivity to pain, cold, or heat
- Reduced mobility
A point to note is that your issue’s rate of progression depends on the location type of tumor. Additionally, spinal cord tumors affect a few people worldwide and their symptoms are similar to other common issues; your doctor may give them little attention during routine visits. However, you should consult Dr. Pan if you experience some of the mentioned symptoms.
What are the treatment options for spinal cord tumors?
Some of the treatment procedures for spinal cord tumors include:
During the diagnosis of other conditions, Dr. Pan may discover a spinal cord tumor before you experience any symptoms. In case the tumor is small and not progressing, your doctor will monitor it using special tools. Dr. Pan will recommend a series of MRI scans at specific intervals to observe the tumor.
This is the most preferred option for tumors with low risks of spinal damages as it offers higher chances of success. Modern techniques help access tumors in areas that were inaccessible in the past. During the surgical procedure, Dr. Pan will observe your spinal cord’s functioning and advise a better option to prevent damage. The recovery period of the surgery is a few weeks or more, depending on the surgery. You are likely to experience numbness, which usually goes away with time.
In case you are experiencing some of the symptoms of spinal cord tumors, contact the office to schedule an appointment and get treatment for your condition.